Try Some Easy Wire Jewelry Making Projects

Anyone who knows me knows that I am not a huge fan of working with wire (except for the projects I made from Rachel Nelson Smith's fabulous book, Seed Bead Fusion.)  But sometimes it pays to know your way around a set of wire-working tools, especially when you want to make a quick pair of earrings as a gift or to match a fabulous new beaded necklace.

I found my (meager) wire-working skills came in handy earlier this year during a weeklong class I taught at a local middle school.  We were making gorgeous beaded jewelry, and suddenly we ran out of ear wires!  Tragedy was narrowly avoided when I realized that I could whip up ear wires using the sterling silver wire I had brought along for another project using nothing more than a pair of pliers, a wire cutter, and a permanent marker.  Here's how to do it:

1. Cut a piece of wire about 1½ inches long. 

2. On one end, make a small loop.  Don't make a wrapped loop, or you won't be able to attach your earring dangle later! 

3. At this point, you can slide on a small decorative bead, if you'd like.

4. Grasp the top of the wire just above the bead (if you added one) with your pliers and make a 90-degree bend in the wire parallel to the loop you made.

5. Place a permanent marker (or pencil, dowel, or other smooth round object) against the wire and bend the wire around to form a large curve.

6. Shape the ends of the wire with your fingers and trim any excess, if desired.  You can also smooth the ends of the wires down with a metal file or jeweler's file. 

7. Make a second wire to match the first, and you've got a pair of handmade ear wires!

Here's a hint: want to make it even easier?  Use a premade eye pin with a loop already there and just add a bead and bend the wire!

Are you "hooked" on wire now?  Get 10 5-Minute Wire Jewelry Projects and explore some more fast and easy wire jewelry projects!

Bead Happy,

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